Tata Trusts and Harvard University South Asia Institute (SAI) today announced collaboration on knowledge creation and capacity building for social and economic empowerment in India.

“Under this collaboration, we will develop entrepreneurship opportunities that will help provide sustainable prosperity to the local communities and will help narrow the demand supply gap for skilled labour,” said R Venkataramanan, Executive Trustee, Tata Trusts.

A key component of the project is the opportunity for budding social entrepreneurs and institutions in India to apply for social innovation grants totalling Rs 50 lakh that will spur interventions and scale up existing initiatives resulting in greater impact in select geographies.

The 18-month research project titled ‘Livelihood Creation in India through Social Entrepreneurship and Skill Development’ is the first step in this direction, a statement from Tata Trusts said.

The project will focus on three key areas: rural livelihood creation with emphasis on the handicrafts and handloom sectors, educational, social and economic empowerment of women and science and technology-based interventions for poverty alleviation.

The purpose of the project will be achieved through research with over 150 institutions across 15 states of India, five workshops with 100 participating NGOs, and 20 webinars involving Harvard faculty and subject experts from India.

SAI-published literature and cases from this project will serve as a resource for Indian institutions and government bodies, it said.